Wikipedia defines anger as an emotion related to one’s psychological interpretation of having been offended, wronged or denied.
Normally, people would not classify us as angry people. We were a happy family unit that had more good days than bad ones. Life wasn’t perfect, but it was perfectly ours.
Then, life changed without warning or our permission. We went from needing doctors only for routine well-exams and physicals to seeing doctors weekly. Cancer has that impact. It turns everything you know upside down. It forces you to confront weighty issues that you would prefer to go unsaid. It forces you to look at your own mortality and tests what you truly believe. It forces a Dad and husband to worry has he done everything he can to protect his family when he is gone.
During Eric’s battle, we have experienced every range of emotion possible. We have been and are still sad. We have cried. And cried. And cried. Frankly, in the words of Lisa Lisa, we are all cried out.
It is time for a new emotion – anger. We aren’t talking about anger that causes you to throw things in frustration. Trust us, we have done that. It may feel good in the moment, but it isn’t always helpful.
We know you have heard that anger isn’t always good. That is usually true. However, when channeled appropriately, anger can be productive. It can mobilize you into positive action.
Malcolm X states “Usually when people are sad, they don’t do anything. They just cry over their condition. But when they get angry, they bring about a change.”
So, here we are. We are angry! We are angry about a cancer so aggressive that recurrence is always in the back of your mind. We are angry about all the dreams that have been buried. We are angry that there are so many others fighting this cancer, but you never hear about them. It is as if there is a secret club with a high initiation fee.
There is nothing we can do to change our outcome. We had one plan, and God had another. In our household, we trust His plan. However, we can work to use our story and grief to help fight for a better outcome for so many others.
It is this belief that drives our hope. A diet of anger alone will not sustain us; it is our hope that replenishes us each day to keep fighting. We are hopeful that starting this foundation, this movement, will help make sense out of what seems so senseless. We are hopeful that our works will bring more awareness about this cancer. We are hopeful that the support of our family, friends, and donors will help provide the assist to finding a cure.
None of this would be possible, if we hadn’t got angry.